I am delighted to be a recipient of an Authors’ Foundation Award from the Society of Authors for a biography I am writing on the medieval female lord, Almodis de La Marche, and her sisters, Raingarde and Lucia.
Almodis was Countess of Toulouse and Barcelona and acknowledged as an active participant in the rule of those two counties in the 11th century, alongside her husbands. Her sister Raingarde was Countess of Carcassonne and their younger sister Lucia was Countess of Pallars Sobira in the Pyrenees (where she was known as Llucia de la Marca). Both Raingarde and Lucia ruled as regents for their young sons, and were significant to the political strategies of Almodis.
Almodis had a very colourful life, with the monk chronicler William of Malmesbury accusing her of ‘a godless female itch’ because she had a series of three husbands, with the third one kidnapping her from the second, perhaps with her collusion. The biography, entitled Three Female Lords, will be published by Impress Books in 2017. My novel Almodis the Peaceweaver was published by Impress in 2011.